How To Change Elderly Diaper?: 5 Best Practices!

Affiliate Disclosure: When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. We regularly update our recommendations. If you find any outdated information, please let us know through our Contact Us page.

Caring for our elderly loved ones often means assisting them with their most intimate needs, including personal hygiene. For caregivers, family members, or nursing professionals, the task of changing an adult diaper can be daunting, especially if they’ve never done it before. 

The challenge lies in ensuring the comfort and dignity of the elderly individual while maintaining hygiene and avoiding potential complications.

This article will detail the top five methods and best practices for changing an elderly diaper, ensuring that caregivers are well-prepared to handle this delicate task with compassion and efficiency.

5 Best Practices To Change Elderly Diaper Easily in 2023

Here are five easy ways to change any elderly diaper within in few seconds!

1. Gather Necessary Supplies and Choose the Right Diaper

Before you begin, ensure you have all the necessary items at hand:

  • Selecting the Diaper: Choose an adult diaper that fits well. Too tight can cause discomfort, and too loose can lead to leaks. Brands often have size charts to guide you.
  • Wipes or Washcloths: These are essential for cleaning the area. Opt for unscented wipes or soft washcloths to avoid skin irritation.
  • Disposable Gloves: For hygiene purposes, always wear gloves during the process.
  • Barrier Cream or Ointment: These can help prevent rashes and skin irritation.

2. Ensure Comfort, Safety, and Privacy

Dignity and safety should be of paramount importance:

  • Privacy: Close curtains, shut doors, and ensure that only necessary people are present. This is a private moment, and the elderly individual should feel secure.
  • Positioning: If the person is bedridden, make sure the bed is at a comfortable height for you. Use safety rails if available. If they’re in a wheelchair, ensure it’s locked in place.
  • Communication: Always inform the individual about each step. Ask if they’re comfortable or if they’re experiencing pain.

3. Remove the Soiled Diaper and Cleanse the Area

Now, onto the main task:

  • Rolling and Support: Gently roll the elderly individual to one side. Support their back with one hand to keep them stable.
  • Loosen the Diaper: Carefully open the diaper tabs or fastenings. As you roll them back towards you, pull the diaper out gently.
  • Cleaning: With wipes or a damp washcloth, cleanse the area from front to back. Ensure you clean all the folds and crevices. For women, it’s essential to wipe from the front to the back to prevent urinary tract infections.

4. Apply a Protective Barrier and Position the Clean Diaper

After ensuring the area is clean, you can proceed:

  • Drying: Before putting on a new diaper, make sure the area is completely dry. This helps in preventing rashes and infections.
  • Apply Barrier Cream: Spread a thin layer of barrier cream or ointment, especially if they have sensitive skin or are prone to rashes.
  • Position the New Diaper: Slide the clean diaper under them, ensuring the back part is aligned with their waist. If they can lift themselves, ask them to do so slightly. If not, gently roll them from side to side to position the diaper correctly.

5. Secure the Diaper and Dispose of the Soiled One

The final steps include:

  • Secure Fastenings: Pull the front of the diaper up and fasten the tabs. Ensure it’s snug but not too tight. Check to see if it fits comfortably around the legs without gaps.
  • Disposal: Roll the soiled diaper inward, sealing the waste inside. Put it in a plastic bag, tie it securely, and dispose of it in a designated trash bin. Avoid using regular trash cans to prevent odors and maintain hygiene.
  • Hand Hygiene: Once done, remove the gloves and wash your hands thoroughly, even if the gloves don’t have any visible soiling.


Changing an elderly diaper is an intimate task that demands respect, patience, and compassion. 

By following the above methods and maintaining continuous communication, caregivers can ensure that the elderly individual feels secure and dignified throughout the process. 

Remember, it’s not just about physical hygiene; preserving their emotional well-being is equally important. With time, patience, and practice, this task can become a seamless aspect of caregiving, emphasizing comfort, safety, and respect for our beloved seniors.